Saturday, January 14, 2012

Removing the eggshells!

This past week I have spoken to 3 different people who all seemed to be dealing with the same dilemma. Difficult people. All 3 people who spoke with me was in some form or fashion dealing with difficult people in their life.

With it being such a up and coming problem in so many of our lives, do I dare ask "How do you deal with difficult people?"

No matter who you are, it is only a matter of time before you yourself will have to work with a difficult person or attend church with a difficult person or even live with a difficult person. I don't like it as much as the next guy, but honestly, dealing with difficult people will either make you or break you. It will bring out the true colors of Christ in you or it will bring out the worst in you. Hopefully dealing with difficulty and strife will mold you into the image of Christ.

Matthew 5:44-48 “But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you in order that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax-gatherers do the same? And if you greet your brothers only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect”.

One of the greatest gifts one can have is being able to love the unlovable, being able to have patience with those that rub us wrong. Many times when we get around such a person, we tend to walk on eggshells. We might even try to avoid them so as to not have to deal with their outbursts. But quite to the contrary, these are the very ones that we should be embracing.

One of the greatest things that we can do to accomplish this is simply by removing the eggshells. You know that hard surface that seems to remain intact between you and that person.

Many times a person acts out or comes across difficult because they have some sort of unresolved issue in their life. It may be something they have tucked away deep inside stemming from neglect or abuse as a child or it just may simply be a need that is not being met in their life such as joy, happiness or content. My husband use to tell me all of the time, "hurting people hurt people."

Not always easy to swallow, especially when you are doing all that you can do to reach out to them. Its one thing if a friend or a co-worker is being difficult to be with, you can always change friends or change jobs but what if it is a family member? Its not like you can change families!

God gives us clear instructions in His Word on how to handle such difficulties. First and foremost in any broken relationship we should always strive for reconciliation. As Followers of Christ, it should be top priority to make amends and find peace with whoever we are having difficulty with.

MATTHEW 5:23, 24 Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, (24) leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering."

This passage gives clear instructions on how to remove the eggshells. I always found it interesting that God is not suggesting that we go to our brother if we remember OUR offense, rather, "remember that your brother has something against YOU." True piety before God would mean that you and I are right with each other. God's Word implores us to not only make things right with our brother but to do it FIRST before bringing our gifts to Him.

To obtain such a reconciliation is going to require some humility. There is no room for pride if you are contending with a difficult person. Having unresolved issues with a brother or sister is not pleasing to God and I have to wonder, according to Matthew, if our offering will not be pleasing and acceptable to Him if we have unresolved issues with our brother? In this sense, brother is not always meaning our blood relative. Our brother can be our friends, our co-workers, our pastor, our Sunday school teacher, your child's teacher or anyone you rub shoulders with.

Do you have some eggshells that you have been avoiding? Maybe some difficult people in your life that have left some open wounds? is a good day to seek reconciliation and remove those eggshells in your life. If you do, please pray the following prayer with me:

Today is a day of reconciliation for me. I recognize that I have had some eggshells in my life. Difficult people are in my life and they drive me crazy. It is my hearts desire to forgive those who have offended me, and love them no matter how they treat me. God, at times I have been a difficult person, for that I ask for forgiveness and ask you to change me and as You change me, I know my attitude will also change. May others see that in me and cause them to want to change to be more like You. I am asking You now, please remove the eggshells in my life so that every area of my life that I offer up to You will be acceptable and pleasing!

1 comment:

Denise said...

I think we all have had to deal with difficult people, give them to Jesus. He can take much better care of them, than we can.